Pilates with Props Found At Home

pilates at home with props

Mat work is AMAZING! But at-home workouts can get a ho-hum after many weeks practicing the same routine. Pilatesology has loads of videos to spice up your sessions so scroll down and grab these household items that double for Pilates equipment. You’ll connect more deeply in the mat exercises plus and learn creative options to make your living room workouts varied, interesting, and fun.

The inspirationLynann Escatel

This video with Lynann Escatel uses a towel to get your upper body aligned and open. Got some cans of beans? You’ll use them to tone your arms for her standing arm series. Say ahh, as you roll the stress out of your feet with a rolling pin, wine bottle, or frozen water bottle in place of a foot corrector. (Mat with Household Props)

Looking for a new mat? Click Here!

Tone those arms, legs, and hips

Want more arms? All of our workouts that use arm weights can be done with cans of soup or water bottles. Make sure your cans are of the same weight. Bonus – you tone your core and seat at the same time.

Another great option on the mat is the rowing series with hand weights. The weights don’t have to be heavy – remember intention, control, and good alignment is what makes these exercises effective. 

Don’t have leg weights? Grab your heaviest boots and wear them for these workouts!  (Videos using hand and leg weights)

Want to buy hand or leg weights? Click Here!

Tight back relief

These videos are particularly good for people with tight upper backs and shoulders who might be working long hours from home on a computer. You or your client will use a broom or mop stick or a straight cane in place of the long pole in a studio.  In these videos, a 5’ pole is used.9277

• Anti-hunchback Workout with Fabien Menegon 

• Seated or Standing Long Pole with Kati Ross Nash

• Advanced Mat with Pole with Kara Wily

• Advanced Pole with Push-ups with Lori Coleman- Brown

Feet + hips

Thick rubber bands, like you would get on fresh broccoli, make a great substitute for a toe corrector.  (You will ask why it wasn’t called the “seat corrector.”)  Plus you’re encouraging good nutrition. (Videos with toe correctors)

Connect more deeply to your centerline

You can use a deflated ball, a firm pillow, or even a yoga block in place of a magic circle.  You will have strong inner thighs, toned upper backs, and strong centers. (Videos with Magic Circles)

Want to buy a magic circle? Click Here!

New relationship with your towel

Towels can be used in place of a bar to give a little more strength and stability in the shoulders and upper back.  There are also a whole set of “towel exercises” for the feet and even some for the face and jaw.

• Advanced Mat with a Towel with Victoria Torrie-Capan

• Intermediate Mat with a Towel with Victoria Torrie-Capan

• Feel Good Feet with Niedra Gabriel

• Jaw and TMJ Fix with Jay Grimes

Posture fixkathryn ross nash pilatesology

The wall can take the place of teachers’ hands.  It provides the feedback you need to hold your spine in an upright position so the brain imprints good posture in the standing position.  The wall can be a great ending for a mat class and can be quite challenging!  (Think wall squats and wall squats one leg!)

• Traditional wall exercises

• Advanced Mat Against the Wall with Kathi Ross Nash

“Balls,” said the queen…

This advanced class uses weighted balls, but if you don’t have weighted balls, you can use a three-pound weight or heavier can from the cupboard.  (Grab your Balls with Kathi Ross Nash)

This class can give you some ideas for using tennis balls and play balls as feedback until we can be “hands on” again. (Core Mat with Brett Howard)

Pilates in a chair

If it is difficult to get on the ground, you or your client can do Pilates in a chair. The new progressive series, Pilates in a chair with Alisa Wyatt, may be a life-changer.  These videos are obviously great for seniors but are also appropriate for people regaining strength after an illness. For mobile people use these exercises on a plane, at your desk or as homework after a lesson.    It might spur your imagination and you will be able to adapt some of the wunda chair exercises to a sturdy household chair.

Pilates in a Chair with Alisa Wyatt

• Pilates for Seniors in a Chair with Simona Cipriati

• Pre-Pilates Progression with Alisa Wyatt

Balance + posture

One of our subscribers suggested using a thick, sturdy book as a two by four (Thank you Kristen!).  Stand in a doorway so you can hold the sides for balance. (Two by Four exercise videos)


Is staying at home getting to you?  Try these restorative and stretchy chill-out videos to help your body, mind, and spirit.  

What Pilates can do for your mind

• Restore Your Core Mat with Blossom Leilani Crawford)

• Dancers Warmup with Blossom Leilani Crawford

• Restore Your Core Mat with Blossom Leilani Crawford

• Chill Out Mat with Clare Dunphy Hemani

“The whole country, the whole world, should be doing my exercises. They’d be happier.” – Joe Pilates

Stay healthy.  Stay active.  Spread Pilates.


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Alisa Wyatt

Alisa Wyatt

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